a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)
|In the second book in the Dan Brodsky series (following Calculus of Murder by the same author), Brodsky is invited to COTCA (the Conference on Operator Theory and C*-Algebras at Oxford University). While attending, he handles a non-math related PI job in England and also attempts to prove the innocence of his mentor, Paul Hobart, who is accused of murder with the motive being tied to the supposed plagiarism of some of his research articles.
I think this book shows a significant improvement over his previous Calculus of Murder. The mathematics seems more realistic and the murder mystery more engaging. It was still sometimes a little too close to reality for me. No, there are not murders happening around me every day; I just mean the passages about what it is like to teach calculus at a university. There is even an ongoing subplot concerning the protagonist's efforts to find a job as a mathematics professor. The author's frustration over the academic job market is clearly visible in this reasonably honest description of hiring practices in mathematics.
I would recommend this as a decent mystery novel which gives the reader some sense of life as an academic mathematician.
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(Maintained by Alex Kasman,
College of Charleston)